Screencast-O-Matic hits the sweet spot in terms of features, ease of use and price. It’s free. It records your webcam as well as your screen, it couldn’t be very much easier to use, and it has some really nice features that you don’t get in any other free screencasting software. For example, when you click your mouse, it inserts a visible and audible click. There is a Mac version, a Windows version and you have the option of launching it as a Java applet from screencast-o-matic.com without installing any software on your computer. This makes it really versatile and useful. The huge advantage of it being free is that you can ask students to install it on their computers without worrying about hitting the pocket-nerve of their parents.
Videos can be saved to your computer as an mp4, uploaded directly to YouTube or published to Screencast-O-Matic’s own video-sharing server (useful if YouTube has not yet been unblocked by your IT department).
While Sceencast-O-Matic is free to use, it will limit you to 15 minutes and puts a small 'Screencast-O-Matic' watermark in the lower left corner of the final published video. There is a Pro version which unlocks a LOT more features. The pro version gives you video editing (delete that cough!), the ability to record system audio, and the ability to record for longer than 15 minutes. It also records videos in higher definition, allows publishing in more video formats, removes the watermark – and more. I think most teachers will find that the free version is all they need. But for those who want to take it up a notch – without going all the way to Camtasia Studio or Screenflow, the Pro version of Screencast-O-Matic only costs $15/year.